According to Bloomberg, Uber Technologies has agreed to acquire Autocab, a UK taxi-software company, in a deal that will allow riders to connect to local drivers in areas where the Silicon Valley giant doesn’t operate.
The deal will ultimately expand Uber’s reach in the UK to as many as about 170 locations from 40, and allow the taxi and private car-hire companies that use Autocab’s software to expand and “offer more earnings opportunities to local drivers,” such as deliveries, the companies said in a statement.
Customers in markets such as Oxford or Exeter will be able to use their Uber app to get a ride from a local car-hire company, though the integration won’t be rolled out in markets where Uber is already in use, such as London, the companies stated. Autocab stated it operates in 30 countries, and Uber may eventually expand the program. Uber stated it will also help the Manchester, England-based firm expand further.
“Every month thousands of people open the Uber app in places the company doesn’t operate to try to get a trip,” the company said in the statement, though Uber hasn’t announced a new location in the UK since 2016.
Uber, which is due to report its financial results on Thursday, August 6, has been struggling with a sharp drop in users this year after the COVID-19 pandemic kept drivers and customers at home. The company announced ride hailing was down about 80% in April at the height of the lockdowns.
Full Content: Bloomberg